Brothers and Sisters, let us unite in a movement that will improve life for us all!

Too many people are suffering poverty, stress and isolation in today's competitive

Let us pool our savings, increase our wealth through investment, and use the money
for houses, businesses, farms, factories, facilities and services that are
community owned, and run co-operatively, for everyones' benefit. Let us act
together to create a world where we have the resources and flexibility to help one
another as freely as we desire in our hearts. Let us buy back the land, resources,
and factories, that were never meant to be owned by individuals. Let us create
communities with real power.

   In a society dominated by a competitive economy, community and common sense
difficult to practice. It's difficult to create community when everyone is busy
making ends meet, there are few public spaces, and there is such pressure to put
work commitments above all else. Valuable ideas, like job sharing, when most
employers oppose it.  Important work is left undone, and lucrative work is
wastefully duplicated. There is a pressing need to reduce poverty, to create
sustainable agriculture and industries, to reduce the demands that work places on
our time, consciousness, relationships and communities, and to create greater
flexibility for raising families, travelling, learning new skills, and moving
between jobs. Building a co-operative economy will give us the power fix these

How does it work?

People pool their savings. It is unimportant how many people contribute, or how
much each person contributes. When enough money is collected, the community chooses
an investment. Wealth is created through the investment. Further investments can be
taken on etc. When the community has created enough wealth this way, a percentage
can be used for community facilities and services. Some examples that come to mind

*	community owned houses, where people can live free from the tyranny of renting.
*	community owned food co-operatives, where our weekly groceries contribute to our
	own community, not Safeway and Coles-Myer.
*	Farms, eco-villages, workshops, vehicles for car-sharing, tool libraries
*	Facilities for Workshops, performances, child-care, spaces to run a business.
*	Community banks,insurance trusts to assist facilitate small businesses and
	community events

What if a person wants to leave the scheme? This is possible. A percentage, such as
20% will not be reclaimable, in order to ensure the continuation of the scheme. The
rest of the money may be reclaimed, perhaps at a rate similar to that in which it
was contributed, in order to help the scheme to finance its investments
Who manages the investments?  A committee will be elected to make decisions. There
may also be a need for a leader, if the committee can not agree on decisions. The
leader could be rotated regularly to guard against corruption. If all of the
committee and the leader wish to terminate their work with the scheme, and no other
members want the job, the investments they manage could be passed to another
community group involved in the same scheme. Community groups with similar aims may
at anytime combine some or all of their resources.

Getting it Started

The first step is to get a list of names and contact details of people who would
like to contribute, and an approximation of how much they would like to contribute.
When there is enough on the list, a management committee will be formed to make
investment decisions. Banks are unlikely to give loans to collectives, so an
individual or couple from the community, with a financial history favoured by
banks, will be found to approach the bank. The first investment might be a house,
in which case about 10 to 20 thousand dollars would be needed for the deposit. The
house, once bought, could be 'rented by members of the scheme, to pay the mortgage
payments. These members will be able to reclaim, for example, up to 80% of the
money they contribute in this way, should they wich to leave the scheme. This is
very similar to co-housing schemes already operating today. After a time, during
which the house may or may not undergo some renovations, it would be sold for a
profit. The money raised would be used for further investments, and for community
projects if the committee thought it sustainable at that early stage.
If you would like to contribute, please advise us of your contact details and
amount you wish to contribute, by any of the following methods:

Phone:	Lachlan Brown: 0417 505 840, (03) 9836 8407
Mail: 	Lachlan Brown: R.M.B. 1520, Greta, 3675

A Revolution by Another Name?

Certainly!  This is a grass-roots path to a shift in power, from companies and
individuals that operate for their own benefit;  to the community, which operates
for the collective benefit. It has a better chance of success than a revolution,
because there is no need to seize power, or impose control. Power will be acquired
gradually, without the need for violent confrontation. Power will be gained in a
decentralised manner: there is no limit to the number of groups that could form to
pool their resources and take on investments. Each group decides how to use the
money.  In time, communities will again own 'the means of production.' Life will be
better indeed.

Philosophical Justification

    The goods and services that sustain us need to be available to everyone
according to their need. The best way to ensure this happens is to let them be the
property of the community, and  administer them for the collective good. All things
are naturally community property, but over time they have been falsely sold to
individuals and companies. The community needs to get them back. The government has
neither power nor inclination to get them back. Confrontational revolution that
aims first to seize power, then to use it more fairly, is easily put down by force,
and is open to corruption even where it succeeds. At this early part of the
process, the most effective way to get back the things we need is to buy  them. To
do this the community needs wealth. Investment is the most effective way to create
wealth. Communities involved in this movement are not mere investors in the
competitive world, because, in contrast to most investors,  they use their wealth
for the collective good. They will buy back the land, so it will never be bought or
sold again.
  Sociologist, Margaret Mead, observed that real progress towards equality happens
when the privileged class willingly give up their advantage, as, for example, when
men voted to allow women to vote. Today many such equalities have been won, but
there is still inequality of wealth and power. If communities have investments to
sell, only those with ample wealth will buy them. Each time they do, they will
peacefully, (and perhaps unknowingly) give up some of their power; - from the
competitive market, to the community. Through this process, and through the useful
projects they build, community investments provide a vehicle to peaceful and
lasting change.


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